Homework Help

In Bernard Shaw's Saint Joan, how do Joan's struggles relate to the struggles we face...

user profile pic

ahardin2 | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 2, 2011 at 2:37 AM via web

dislike 2 like

In Bernard Shaw's Saint Joan, how do Joan's struggles relate to the struggles we face in todays modern age society?

Because Joan is a woman she faces struggles, it seems, simply for being so. What are some examples from the text that I can use to relate her struggles to the general struggles we face today?

1 Answer | Add Yours

user profile pic

accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted March 2, 2011 at 4:45 AM (Answer #1)

dislike 1 like

I think one approach you might want to consider is how males oppose Joan not because of her gender necessarily, but because they are concerned abotut the effect that supporting her would have on their own power. Thus it is that Bishop Cauchon, for example, is far more concerned about Joan's individualistic views and how they threaten the church's position, which is why he labels her a heretic rather than a witch. In the same scene, Warwick shows this same tendency by fearing an increase in the power of the nobility at the expense of the rights of the feudal class. It appears that Joan is presented as a dangerous pawn that is unaware of her effect and how others view her, and is sacrificed for greater goals that she is naive about.

I am sure there are lots of comparisons that can be drawn with similar situations where somebody sets out to do something and make a difference for all of the right reasons, wanting to do good, but in the end finds out that their actions and motives are used and manipulated by others for their own purposes and goals, such as charity work or work for an NGO or development organisation.

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes